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14 easy steps on how to get a bigger bench

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

Sep 5, 2016 10:00:00 AM

14 easy steps for a bigger bench press

This is what I learned on my journey to a 150kg bench press so far. That is not the most in the world, but at least the most in my local gym for my weight class. Hope you enjoy these easy tips and start implementing them tomorrow. 

Bench press calculator

1. Start benching

The first way to get a better bench press is to actually bench press. Stop the excessive biceps curling, cable pulling and other shiny dumb bell and machine work. The barbell is your friend. Use it, respect it and get results from it.

2. Use lesser repetitions

A bigger bench does not necessarily mean bigger chest. While big chest muscles definitely help with moving more weight on the bench press, a big bench press in terms of weight lifted is more likely achieved with repetition ranges between 2 – 5 per set rather than 8 – 12. So if you want a bigger bench, go for lower reps. If you want a bigger chest, go for higher rep ranges.

3. Know smolov Jr

I have done Smolov Jr in mid-2016 to move my bench from 140kg to 150kg. With this result, I do not seem to be an isolated case. If you have a plateau and your bench is not going anywhere, know this program and use it to your advantage.

4. Bench more

 Benching more = bigger results. It is as simple as that. If you want to be the biggest most badass bench presser in your local gym just bench more and more often than anybody else. That is the good thing about lifting, it is simple and rewards consistency.

5. Arch your back

Learn how to arch your back to get more tension into your bench press. The idea is that only your bum and your shoulders touch the bench, while your back is arched in a way that most of it does not make contact with the bench. You should have done this naturally already when you lifted your backside of the bench to squeeze out one more rep. Think about the same lines for your setup except keeping your butt cheeks on the bench.  

6. Know how to do set up safety pins

It is of no use to you when you start benching heavy and a lot and you do not take the necessary precautions. Use a power rack for your bench press and set the safety pins up at the right height. This means that after arching your back your chest is slightly higher up than the safety pins. This enables you on a failed rep to get your back flat and leave the barbell to rest on the pins while exiting beneath. If you do not have a way o using safety pins avoid collars for the bench press. In this scenario, you can lose plates if you get pinned under the bar to rescue yourself. Be careful with this approach as the barbell tends to get a life on its own when you are at your weakest.

7. Do Dips

Dips are one of the best exercises according to Ed Coan to develop a bigger triceps. The triceps might even be more important than the chest in a big bench press, which is often misunderstood. So make use of dips to get them big triceps.

8. Do triceps extensions

If you do pulley work for a big bench press this is the way to go. I like to do a very light weight in the range of 20 – 40kg on the triceps extension after my bench workout. I do as many reps as possible for three to five sets. This will give you a nice pump to make your arms grow.

9. Do Skull crushers

If you can not do dips because you are too big or not mobile enough, skullcrushers are the next best thing to supplement. Be careful with this exercise and know your limits as it is skullcrusher for a reason based on the movement pattern.

10. White knuckle

Squeeze the barbell as hard as you can when you perform the bench press. This will develop additional force and more focus to perform harder and longer.

11. Use paused bench presses

Paused bench presses touch the chest and then you leave it there for 2 – 3 seconds to completely kill the momentum of the movement. This has the benefit of making sure that you will develop more force out of the lowest position, in the long run, getting more stretch into the muscle to get it bigger and being able to bench press at powerlifting competitions. Most commonly seen in gyms is the touch and go bench press which has less of these advantages.

12. Get a spotter

This will help to push you to the maximum. With a spotter, you usually are able to squeeze out one or two more repetitions with a tiny bit of help. This translates to more weight moved and therefore a bigger bench press. So a training buddy makes sense. Just get someone reliable who can stick to a schedule and does not hang you out to dry.

13. Have a goal

Last but not least put a number down what a big bench press does actually mean to you and compare with the standards on the web. This will help you to break the steps needed to get there down into little chunk to finally be successful.

14. Eat well & sleep well

All this training does nothing for you if you are not to rest regularly and long by sleeping seven to eight ours and eating well. It is all about forming better habits to get to where you want to be and same goes for your bench press. 

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Topics: Bench Press